Have you ever come across someone online who just kind of sparks your interest? For good, for bad, for whatever reason, they are just kind of fascinating. This is what I thought the first time I clocked The Makeup Fairy AKA Joanne Larby. I remember hearing her speak at and event in Dublin and even thought at the time I didn’t ono who she was, I was sooooo impressed. As far as I could see, nothing fazed her, and if it did, she didn’t ket you know it. She’s a boss woman for sure, she’s in charge and in control of her life and I love that.
Over the past five years Irish Blogger & Makeup artist Joanne Larby, The Makeup Fairy has gained a huge following and fan base to her blog The Makeup Fairy. Joanne is the Brand Ambassador for ONLY Clothing, Dr.Martins Coco Juice and Beauty Emporium, is the official blogger for The Pavilions Shopping Centre and the L’Oréal Colour Trophy Awards, she’s recently been made a YouTube and Stylehaul Partner and has updated her Make Up Portfolio with some well known UK celebrities. As a blogger and business woman, Joanne inspires so many people with her amazing work ethic, chic style and overall sincerity and kindness.
Needless to say I was delighted when Sinead and I decided to invite Joanne over to Galway and have her come and chat with out ITWBN bloggers for the day at #itwbnBloggerEvent. I just knew that being such an inspiring woman and blogger, she would have tons of advise and helpful tips for our bloggers.
On the day of the event, we took up residence in the stunning ballroom at the Ardilaun Hotel in a very beautiful area of Galway, Taylors Hill. This time of year Taylors Hill is a backdrop of perfect Autumnal colours with a rustic feel. We decorated the room as usual with all our beautiful balloons and branded goodies which we had printed the week before in Isupply. The exhibitors on the day started to arrive too.
We were thrilled to have the wonderful Catriona from Solaris Tea with us again at this event. Having had her with us for our Afternoon Tea with Retro Flame event, we had fallen in love with both her and the Solaris Tea brand and were eager to have her join us again. Solaris Tea, are a family run business consisting of husband and wife tea, Joerg and Karin Mueller. They specialise in the blending and preparation of International Award winning Whole-Leaf Organic Teas. Once again having Cat join us for the day and serve the stunning tea range was brilliant! She personally saw that everyone got exactly the right flavour and blend of Solaris Tea to suit them and made sure that everyone had a hot cup in front of them throughout the day!
Next up we had Maryrose or MyLadyBug.ie exhibiting too! I first found MyLadyBug.ie on twitter and was fascinated by the product and idea! MyLadyBug.ie is Ireland’s first period subscription box, that delivers your pads/tampons direct to you – custom to your needs . Their mission is to take the drama, out of Period Drama and to say hello to a stress-free organised period instead. Subscribe to their Subscription Box and each month you will not only find all the essentials but also some treats too like sweets and herbal tea. Just what the doctor [probably] ordered! Their easy-to-use website makes the entire process as simple as ordering your favourite beauty products online!
Our next exhibitor for the day was Carmel at Kinvara Skincare. We loved having them with us on the day as we love to support local businesses! Kinvara Skincare are all natural, combining scientific innovation to harness and distill the power of plants, seaweeds, vitamins and minerals into fantastic products for your face and body. Each ingredient is chosen with care and after much research for a specific purpose – you can buy Kinvara Skincare products with peace of mind knowing you’ve got a quality product you can trust. Carmel was on hand on the day to discuss many of the products Kinvara Skincare have to offer as well as give some sample products to the bloggers! Kinvara Skincare are also a firm favourite of The Makeup Fairy so it was brat to have them on board.
Finally we had the lovely Frieda from Athlone Towncentre with us too! Athlone Towncentre is a shopping centre located in Athlone, County Westmeath, Ireland. The shopping centre is the largest shopping centre in the Irish midlands and although we have a great array of stores here in Galway and boast lots of boutiques and original stores, Athlone is now a huge retail centre for all the counties! Gone are the days of having to haul yo’ ass up to Dublin to get to some of your high street faves, now its a skip over to Athlone instead! We loved having Athlone Towncentre with us on the day who ran a wonderful competition and loved meeting all the eager blogging talent!
So Joanne arrived and she was such a hun! She brought along her Mom too for support (cos’ ya never too old to bring ya mammy with ya!) and on meeting her Mom I could see where Joanne’s enthusiasm for her work comes from. We had a drinks reception where Joanne and the bloggers got acquainted and were treated to the most beautiful Mocktails and treats by the Ardilaun Hotel! I have to say, the attention to detail and the array of treats provided blew me away on the day!
The staffed brought down their beautiful food/cake stands which housed our yummy brunch! There was delicious Seafood Bouchons and Pork Shoulder and Black Pudding as well as the divine Goats Cheese, Chick pea humus and avocado salsa on a Chinese spoon (top marks for presentation, I had never seen this one before!!). Then there was homemade mini-fruit scone with sweet, fresh creme and strawberries on top which were my favourites and sweet potato cake which I hadn’t ever tried but helped myself to two helpings off! YUM! Then the dessert was a sensational Chocolate Torte which was all kinds of YES!
Joanne took the stage after brunch and we all sat eagerly waiting to hear her talk. This woman is super inspiring. She is so very smart and down to earth. She spoke to us about her journey into blogging, the beauty industry, modelling, going to university, relationships, fitness and of course, business. Joanne is an avid business woman who spoke the bloggers about knowing their worth and getting recognised for your work. One thing that came across was that Joanne had never had anything ‘handed to her’. She is clearly such a hard worker and she fights for her business. She doesn’t let people tell her ‘no’ and she believes in herself and her worth which is something I think everyone can work on in themselves every now and again. She’s had tough times and great times and she keeps her readers/fans very close and in on her life. She understands about sharing just enough with them.
Countless girls look up to Joanne. You can tell by listening to her Snapchat Q&A’s and again at the event on the day. Questions to Joanne range from what makeup she’s wearing to how she does her taxes as a self employed business woman to how she designs her blog and keep momentum for fitness. She is a fountain of information and she’s doesn’t keep it all to herself! She’s super helpful and shares out her knowledge and support in the hope of helping people.
After her talk, which, in honesty could have gone on another hour!! (So many questions!!) Joanne then went around chatting to everyone, answering more questions and taking photos. We sat/stood around for an hour or so more chatting about everything from blogging to snapchat to boys and business! As we wound down the day and people started to depart I had to hand it to Sinead and to our team on the day, this #itwbnBloggerEvent, the Beauty Brunch with The makeup Fairy was such a great success!! It had something a little more intimidate than the other events and I think it was my favourite to date.
No Into The West Blogger Network event would be complete without the amazing blogger goodie bags of course! We were thrilled to see so many companies involved again this time with our goodie bags! There was The Body Shop, Ogra Skincare, Nia Natural Skincare, Brodericks Brothers Rocky Road Bars, Flormar Cosmetics, Wet N Wild Cosmetics, Propercorn, Blank Canvas Cosmetics and Impress Nails not to mention the adorable packets of hot chocolate and vouchers from MyLadyBug and the travel kit from Kinvara Skincare. ITWBN bloggers are SPOILED!!
I am extremely grateful to the team which make it all manageable on the day!! Our wonderful ITWBN cheerleader, Ruth of the Beauty Kemple blog and our main man Kieran of Fear Nua blog with the help of Paula Fins Fangs Feathers & Fur blog too! We would be lost without these babes helping us out. The Ardilaun staff were an absolute delight to work with for this event! Everything ran smoothly and without a hitch, the room looked amazing and the food was stunning! a massive thank you goes to our new sponsor Isupply who printed all our promotional material this time around. Their work was excellent and their attention to detail unmatched! Thank you guys!
Of course, the final thank you goes out to the bloggers! What an amazing new bunch of people we have blogging in Ireland! I just loved meeting LOADS of new faces!! Im so thrilled that you all came along to the Beauty Brunch event and that we got meet and chat with all of you! You are the reason Into The West Blogger Network is here – without you all it just wouldnt be.
To end the day, as always, there was the go to crew of babes who sat around discussing life and having a coffee/glass of wine. Thanks again for the support gorgeous people, you’re all pretty amazing!!!!
We have just one more #itwbnBloggerEvent on before the end of the of this year!! Blogging 4 Business, The Business of Blogging will be held in the Galway Bay Hotel on the 15th of this month. An event which will highlight and discuss the importance of Blogging, SEO and Content Marketing for businesses. Taking your business website to new heights with blogging and taking your blog one step further to a business. We have four great speakers/ experts on the panel for this event too! Journalist and author Joanne Sweeney Burke, Digital Marketeer Robin Chedgey, tech GENIUS and WordPress Wiz Micheál Reilly and successful Irish Blogger Ciara O Doherty will all be in attendance on the day sharing advice and tips!